Interviews

PUR: Interview with Per Gessle

Translation thanks to Ted Holgersson: Hello i´m Elise and i come from the youth (care of plan) . Do you think that you look different at children qyuestions just because you're a parent? PER: Yes, if that i´m compare to how i thought when I didnt had any child if I say - even if its quite long ago 11 years. Elise: This year we have a theme at the gala which is "the girls of the world", what do you think about that? PER:Of course it's excellent! Elise:Are you father yourself? PER:Yes I ,my wife and son got a little twin-child from Colombia a cute little girl who write fantastic pretty letters to us. I think everyone should have a twin-child - its a really good advantage. Elise:What do you think about the performance at the gala today? PER: Really nice and superb. And its nice to sing a real uptempo song feels really good. Elise :How do you feel that its a "fadder gala " and everyhing that comes with it? PER: It feels great to be to take part of it I have been here many times before. We have a new drummer - a guest drummer which is really exciting from Sahara hotnights . Elise: Thanks a lot! PER: Thanks ! Download the interview here

Vicki Benckert for ROxette.ro!

1. What do you do for a living nowadays? Mostly I work as a translator and director of local versions of Disney movies and tv-series. 2. How did you become a backing vocalist? I had a record career as a singer/songwriter (though the word wasn't invented yet). Note that I played (acoustic) guitar, mandoline and accordion with Roxette. My main instrument is keyboards, and when touring as a solo artist I used to play electric guitar. Per and Marie saw me in a band and asked me if I would join them on a world tour:-) 3. What were the tours with Roxette? Joyride 1991-92 110 venues in europe, south & north america, australia. I had already been to SOVIET Moscow, Sotji and Kiev, to Lebanon and Israel and other odd places as a solo singer, but this was my first (and last?) world tour. 4. Did you have a great time? Tell us more about those times. It was great of course, but touring is touring whether in Sweden or worldwide; Get up in time for breakfast and a brief walk to check out city or qat least hotels neighborhood, check out of hotel 11 am & go to airport (or by bus to next arena), arrive at 4 pm, check in at thotel, soundcheck 5 pm, dinner at arena, show at 8 or 9 pm, leave arena at 11 or 12 pm, have a few drinks in hotelbar or at sponsors party, get to bed, get up in time for breakfast... 5. How did you meet Marie and Per? I suppose we had met at some social event, but I didn't know any of them before Marie called me on the phone one day and asked me if I would go on a world tour with them. 6. Would you do a tour again? Of course I would tour again, I love to travel! 7. How was the MTV Unplugged for you?

Micke Syd for roxette.ro

[img_assist|nid=1824|title=|desc=|link=popup|align=right|width=200|height=300]1. What are you doing right now; do you have any projects on? Do you go to work? Are you in a holyday? Do you have a business to take care of?
I’m playing in a couple of bands, both as drummer/singer and singer alone. I work as DJ sometimes and I work with other stuff as well.

2. Tell us about you, how do you describe yourself?
I’m 47 years old, married I have 4 kids and 2 cats and we live in a house south of central Stockholm.

3. Are your children involved in music?
My daughter sings in school and the guys are playing just for fun.

4. How did you become a drummer?
I always wanted to play drums.

5. How did you meet Per?
He was in a band with MP and they needed a drummer.

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6. Do you miss GT 25?
No don’t miss it but I’m very proud and happy that we could do it.

7. Did you get nervous before the beginning of the tour?
No, I usually don’t get nervous when I play.

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8. Would you do a GT 30 tour in 2009?
No we don’t, but we don’t know what can happen in the future :)

9. Were there the same jokes and fun as you’ve done as a teenager band?
Some of them maybe, but there is a different kind of fun when you get older.

10. Do you have girl fans stalking you?
In the 80's they did, not now. Now I’m old enough to be their father :)

11. How often do you talk with Per?
Not especially often.

12. Is it hard to work with Per?
No it’s not.

13. What are your relations with Per nowadays?
It's fine, we have fun when we meet.

14. Have you ever bought a Roxette album?
No I got them for free :D

15. Do you talk to Marie as well?
Same answer as with Per

16. What do you think of her?

Per for Aftonbladet

[img_assist|nid=1801|title=|desc=|link=none|align=right|width=210|height=388]Per will soon be 50, but he has no plans to unwind.
Instead, Per Gessle steps into a higher gear, with a new solo album, and plans for both Roxette and Gyllene Tider:
I have three great Roxette songs that are waiting in the box, he said.
The silence may never be long.

The current English album, "Party crasher" was written directly after the "En handig man" tour, last fall. In January, he went into the studio.
When I work, there is no particular view, until it suddenly says boom. I had no plans for a new disc, but I started to produce some grooves, based on ideas gathered in many years.

Speaking through other

During the interview, Per makes many references to the Beatles, Neil Young, ABBA and Bob Dylan. At 49 years, he talks all the time by quoting others, like a living encyclopedia of music history.
Benny Andersson once said that he was so happy that the whole world had the same taste in music as he had: that they love ABBA. As it is, I am my biggest music fan.

There has passed just over a year since the last plate. Why is this happening so fast?
I've done a lot of albums in a short time, so I really shouldn't make another. But the pace that normal artists have today is three or four-year cycles. It doesn't work without the plates being accelerated. What should I do otherwise?

What do you do between discs?
I always do discs (laughter). I always have a project on time. I think there will be more Roxette and Gyllene Tider, Swedish and English projects.

Are there concrete plans?
I have three great Roxette songs in the bureau drawer and just as many good Gyllene Tider songs. Everything is there.

When the prospect?

Per's list

[img_assist|nid=1794|title=|desc=|link=none|align=right|width=320|height=320]In the interview for Expressen, Per made a list of "best things", according to himself:

The best songs he has done:

1. Tycker om när du tar på mig (from Mazarin, 2003):
It should be easier to write love texts when you get older, but it just gets tricky. Maybe because you lack the naivity that you have when you are young. But this is a love text, written to my wife, which I am very proud of.

2. The Look (From Look sharp!, 1988):
A great little song, right? It was so easy - everything was quite obvious. I built up a little ZZ Top groove and all the pieces fell into place without effort. It still sounds like a hit.

3. Perfect excuse (Party crasher, 2008):
I am really so happy with the new album. This ballad is great. I sing it very quietly, but it may go in a completely different way. I feel like I found new ways to sing at this time.

4. Perfect Day (From Joyride, 1991):
We discovered that Vicki Benckert could play the accordion and wanted to make something of it. The accordion is never wrong. And it was a very nice ballad, like "Listen to your heart". I borrowed a chorus wrote by MP, made lyrics, and wrote a new chorus. Marie sings wonderfully.

5. Det hjärta som brinner (from Modern Times, 1981):
If I am not mistaking, I wrote it in a park ... somewhere. I can't think of any direct reason of why it is so good. It was just a pop song who also feels like that, and it is always wonderful to play live.

His 3 big influences while working for "Party crasher":

1. Computer:
I have been in and worked with computers in the studio before, but this time I was at home with my computer and played. For me, it was a whole new way of working, and it was truly inspiring. I had not recorded a single demo when we started to record the new disc.

2. Solo band (Christoffer, Clarence and Helena):

Per: "My target is Europe, now!"

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We ask ourselves a simple question: "Why is Per singing in English again?" The answer is even simpler: Per plans an international comeback.
The goal is Europe, says Per for Expressen, and reveales his plans for an European tour.

Next week, "Party Crasher" will be officially released. The first single, "Silly Really", has already topped the Swedish singles charts, and Gessle now hopes that his music "is not just a matter of Blue and Yellow".

It is Europe I work on in the first place, he says, filled with self-confidence.
The only problem is that EMI is a record in tatters. Now I am looking for others who can give the disc in countries in which EMI is almost inexistent.
About U.S., Gessle was there to explore interest in the country where Roxette singles topped the charts four times.

I met Nile Rodgers through a common friend in New York, and it turned out that he loved "Silly really", says Gessle.
Rodgers, who among other things, produced Donna Summer, Madonna and Duran Duran in the'80s, was a member of Chichester - who inspired Gessle during work on "Party crasher".
Per Gessle, who issued a solo disc as never before during the 2000s, seems to fill the calendar for next year. He said that Christoffer Lundqvist and Clarence Öfwerman, his cronies in the studio, were constantly terrorizing his mailbox with suggestions on what songs Gessle should play live.

To play at rock clubs
In Europe, the disc could be out as early as February / March. But, it also could be later. In any case, there will be a tour.
Per Gessle hopes to play in rock clubs, something he says he has never done before, except three Roxette concerts and a solo concert in Norway.
Despite all the focus on "Party crasher", Per says he keeps everything open.

Per talkes about "Party Crasher"!

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LJUSDAL/LONDON - The Daily Roxette managed to get hold of Per Gessle in spite of his award show in London, so we took the opportunity to get updated regarding his new project.

Hej Per, another summer full of work is over. You never tire do you, huh?

Well sir, as a matter of fact my whole summer was free and easy. We stopped our studio work in May and didn’t continue until late August so I got my fair share of suntan, go-karts, bikinis and belinis.

I see, so another well deserved vacation? Where do you get your energy from? The vacations? It's not like you need the money or the fame anymore, what drives you onward and forward?

Ooops I did it again, didn’t I? You know, I don’t really write songs anymore unless there is a purpose. A couple of weeks after the “En händig man-tour” last summer I got into this idea of writing songs based on “grooves” and a steady beat instead of just fooling around on the guitar. I had a field day! Before X-mas I had about 10 new songs.

You could as well "lay on the beach earning 20 %" you know?

Nah, not me.

I agree, it doesn't sound like you, does it? Great though to see yet another branch of the good old Gessle tree. How long have you wanted to make an album like this? What gave you the inspiration this time? I know same old question, but hey…

Press covers about the forthcoming album!

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Aftonbladet

Per Gessle will PASS UP Sweden

- It will not be probably a Sweden tour, we are aiming for a club tour in Europe instead. I will also travel to New York for meetings and hope to get the disc in the U.S., "says Per Gessle.

Per Gessle is in London to receive the prize for four million U.S. radio playes for Roxette "Listen to your heart."
Aftonbladet teletext

Kultur/Noje

Just in time for Christmas sales Per Gessle will release a new English album. Work has been done completely in silence.
" We’ve been kind of secretive all along, it’s really fun that you still can do that," says Per Gessle. The album "Party crasher" will be release December 3. It is Gessle’s first English disc in his own name, in over a decade. And this time he is aiming more towards the dance floor than previously.
"I wanted to find a new way of writing, so I began to listen to the songs with beats that I like, everything from" Let's dance " with David Bowie to the old 70s disco wallop. I tried to write songs based on these.” First single "Silly really" comes out October 27.
- My wife says the album sounds like The Bee-Gees meet Gyllene Tider. I disagree, but I can see her point. It has a sweet disco feeling all over it. But recognizing Per Gessle over the beats shouldn't be a problem.
“It’s really simple power pop, lots of choruses and such. I’m very pleased and Clarence feels it’s the best album I’ve ever made.”
The album is made in English to be able to hit internationally.
"But it’s a long way to go, I don’t take anything for granted. It’s not like I’m going to England to sell out Wembley, unfortunately. But at the same time, Roxette is bigger than in a long while, so we’ll see.” says Per Gessle.

Interview with Jens Jansson

Brainpool is Christoffer Lundquist, David Birde, Jens Jansson. Started in the early '90s by four teenagers with a taste for new wave and Small Faces, their debut, Soda, immediately became one of the most successful records of the Swedish new pop wave. After a couple of years of touring and recording (Painkiller, Stay Free) they got tired of it and changed direction completely. They scaled down and became a trio and released a very different album (You Are Here) with influences like New Order, Harold Faltermeyer and Mr. Data. The band started to produce (Ed Harcourt, Florian Horwath, Roxette) and play with other acts (A Camp, Righteous Boy, Hideki Kaji, Viebeke Saugestad). During this period they decided to make a rock opera since it felt like the most stupid thing to do. Four years in the making, Playground Records Scandinavia released Junk: A Rock Opera as a double CD concept album (2004). In 2005, Sweden's Malmö Festival commissioned Brainpool to do a concert version of Junk with the Malmö Symphonic Orchestra. The one-time concert played on the main stage to an audience of ten thousand people. From the beginning, Brainpool envisioned that Junk: A Rock Opera should exist as a full-scale piece of theatre. In May of 2007, after three years of development and correspondence with director Shakina Nayfack, Brianpool flew out to Los Angeles to see the world premiere workshop. Their minds were officially blown. Read more about Brainpool here. So, read an exclusive interview with Jans Jansson, the drummer from Brainpool, and also from Per's Mazarin and EHM tours!
Oh, that was a lot. I'll answer as much as I can... 1. What’s your current occupation? Do you play in other bands? I make commercials and play in other bands. Right now I'm playing with a good friend of mine who lives in Paris. Peter Von Poehl is his name and the music is great. 2. How did you become a drummer? I think it was a friend of mine who suggested that we should take some drum classes when I was a kid. He quit, I stayed. 3. When did you meet Per and Marie? In 1995, when we toured with Roxette, with my band Brainpool. 4. What tours have you played with Per? I've only done two tours. The first was the "Mazarin" tour and last summer we did the EHM tour. 5. Tell us about the EHM tour, how was it, funny moments, as much as you remember. It was a great tour. Everyone in the band are really nice people who are really fun to be around. The funniest moment was when we got attacked by a cover band that plays Gyllene Tider songs at a gas station. Nice, but crazy people. www.youtube.com/watch?v=1OXXMyjrAyc&eurl=http://www.enhandigman.se/ 6. If Per will tour again will you join? I hope so, yes. 7. How does it feel to record with Per?

Interview with Staffan Ofwerman

Staffan Ofwerman was born in a suburb (called Täby) north of Stockholm, Sweden, 1962. He used to be a musician earlier in his life and toured with a couple of Swedish artists and bands. From 1988 until 1994 he was a member of the Roxette band and did some tours and recordings with them, including a worldwide tour called Joyride (travelling the world for a whole year). In this band he was playing percussion and 2nd keyboard and doing backing vocals. He also has had his own bands, where he usually is the lead singer. These bands were Stilmord (3 singles early 80s), The Breeze (5 singles early 90s) and lately Nattugglorna (a look-alike-show of a Swedish singer called Magnus Uggla). In august 2008 Staffan started up the old project, The Breeze, with new musicians and they are now rehearsing and writing new material to get the show on the road.
Now, read a special interview with Staffan, exclusively for Roxette.ro! 1. What’s your current occupation? After I played with Roxette, I felt that I had done a great tour and could probably never do something like that again (if I wasn’t the lead singer of course), so I decided to try another job and started working with final art in an advertising agency. I’ve been doing that since then, but I'm still in the music business in my spare time, with my own recording studio as a hobby. 2. How did you become a percussionist? Actually, I don’t consider myself a percussionist. I started out playing the drums back in school and did that for a couple of years, then I started as a lead singer with a band and also played some keyboards. So I guess I play a little bit of everything and not as good as many people out there, but I learn pretty quick. I guess my main instrument is my voice. That’s why people hire me most of the time. 3. When did you meet Per and Marie? I met both Per and Marie in the 80’s when I was touring with Efva Attling. But I didn’t meet them at the same time. Back than, I had a band together with Anders, Micke and Göran from Gyllene Tider and both Per and Marie were doing guest performances with us. I guess that’s when they wanted me to join the Roxette band. 4. Why did you stop recording and touring with Roxette? Well, I think the main reason is that they wanted to change the lineup of the band and my spot wasn’t included in that plan. They had two drummers (well, Mats Persson also played percussion of course) and also one extra guitar instead. I’m not sure it was a great solution, since I don’t think they sounded that fun on that tour. But of course the lineup I was in maybe wasn’t much better. I never saw myself from the audience, so I have no idea. But life goes on and this is the way the music business is. There are NO hard feelings whatsoever. They are all great guys. 5. Tell us about the Joyride tour, how was it? Some funny moments, as much as you remember. I have a plan to write some stuff about this in The Breeze Club soon. There will be some kind of backstage area where people can login to see more behind the scenes stuff from the band members of my band, The Breeze. So I will sit down and think about good memories from my years with Roxette, both Look Sharp tours, Joyride and MTV Unplugged. And I will also scan some of my private photos and put in The Breeze Club. 6. If Roxette will tour again, will you join?
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